Hypaethral Hike

No, I didn't alter the contrast in P-shop, this is how it looked.

Yeah, I know Milton McCauley, Master Hiker of the Monicas, said that “every day was a good day for hiking, no matter what kind of weather,” but I’ll bet he owned a poncho.

Me, I don’t. Nor a rain hat. Nor a water-repellant jacket. No laughing at the elements for me.

I had hoped to bring you a report on the Rocky Peak Trail up into the cloud-hidden heights of the Santa Susana Mountains — so well described by Casey Shreiner on his Modern Hiker weblog — but the angry Sky Gods drove me back. The very clouds that hid the heights soaked me to the skin before I’d gone half a mile. But even that half mile was enough to see such beauties as glisten in the fog-blurred photo above; and enough to make me swear unto the Sky Gods and Mountain Gods, “I’ll be back.”

During my return to home base — where I sit now typing and shivering with what I hope is a passing chill — I stopped to pick up rain wear at a sporting goods store which I will not name because it was so ratty I feared the Plague. They had some nice small arms which I considered for those weekends I go drug-running, but what they offered for foul-weather was more suitable to sitting in a duck blind than blithe excelsioring up a slope. I passed.

Next I stopped at the Westfield Promenade, a classy Valley mall at which I never shop, having no use for Talbots et. al., but which I like to visit because of its hypaethral central dome:

Yep, that's a hypaethral dome, all right.

I like this hypaethral dome in part because it is as close as I’m likely to get to the famous hypaethral dome of the Pantheon in Rome, one of the great architectural hypaethral splendors of the ancient world. Also because I am proud to know a classy word like “hypaethral” but never ever get the chance to use it. Hypaethral ceilings, whether domed or undomed, never seem to come up in conversation. Or in writing, for that matter. This may well be this is my final opportunity to use the word hypaethral.

Hypaethral. Hypaethral. Hypaethral.

Anyhow, there’s a Chick’s Sporting Goods in that mall — my second reason for the mall visit — but they’re more geared to surfing and skiing than to trailblazing, and so I left empty-handed, pausing on my way out to observe the fickleness of the Sky Gods through hypaethral dome.

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